This hearty pasta recipe turned out so well, it’s sure to be a keeper. Pork ragus are traditionally made with slow-cooked, shredded pork butt or shoulder, but this one substitutes the more economical ground pork. It simmers on your stove for nearly 2 hours, so your kitchen will smell heavenly. Ideal for an informal winter dinner, paired with rustic bread and salad.
Tagliatelle with Pork Ragu Serves 4 to 6
Adapted from “La Cucina Italiana,” October 2010
6 ounces sweet Italian sausage
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2 leafy rosemary sprigs
2 leafy sage sprigs
1 celery stalk, cut crosswise into 3 pieces
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
1 garlic clove, peeled
½ pound ground pork
14-ounce can tomato purée
1 pound tagliatelle
1. Remove sausage from casing and break into bits. Tie together rosemary, sage and 1 piece celery with kitchen string.
2. In a wide heavy pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion, remaining celery, herb bundle and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, 6 to 8 minutes. Add sausage and cook 3 more minutes, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon to break up clumps into tiny bits. Add pork and cook, breaking up meat into bits, for 3 minutes more, then add tomato purée and 1 ¼ cups water; stir to combine well.
3. Bring sauce to a gentle simmer and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1 ½ hours. Remove and discard celery, herbs and garlic.
4. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and immediately toss with ragu.
Reach Gretchen McKay at email@example.com.